Russian Federation tasks Hollywood actor Seagal with improving US ties

Russian Federation tasks Hollywood actor Seagal with improving US ties

Born in the United States, actor Steven Seagal was granted Russian citizenship in November 2016.

In 2014, Seagal posted a statement on his website to clarify that he had been misquoted by media outlets saying he called Vladimir Putin, the Russian president, the world's greatest leader.

Actor Steven Seagal speaks at a news conference, while attending an opening ceremony for a research and development center in Moscow, Russia, Sept. 22, 2015.

But on Saturday, Russia honored Seagal again, this time with a position as a special envoy to the United States.

According to the ministry, Seagal's role is described as being akin to when "people's diplomacy meets halfway traditional diplomacy", comparing the role as that of a United Nations Goodwill Ambassador. Former co-stars have often talked about the actor's violent temper on the set of his movies, which doesn't really bode well for negotiating peace between two countries.

He is also one of the Hollywood stars accused by several women of sexual misconduct in the wake of the #MeToo campaign, which he has denied.

As for Russian and United States relations now, things are a bit contentious, to say the least.

Seagal's fame peaked in the late 1980s and early 1990s with films such as Under Siege and Above the Law, but he remains hugely popular in eastern Europe and was granted both Russian and Serbian citizenships in 2016.

This will cover "culture, art, public and youth exchanges, among other things", the Russian Foreign Ministry said on its Facebook page. "I take this honour very seriously". Seagal does not believe Russian Federation interfered in the USA presidential election. "The task is to facilitate relations between Russian Federation and the United States in the humanitarian field, including cooperation in culture, arts, public and youth exchanges, and so on".

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